Successful Recruitment Strategies

There are plenty of online articles giving advise to jobseekers on ways to stand out in a competitive marketplace. However, it's incredibly difficult for applicants to rewrite a CV or compose the perfect covering letter if they can't work out what the recruiter is looking for or simply fail to spot the perfect match on a crowded job board.

A quick look at some current vacancies on will explain why some employers might be failing to receive applications from suitable jobseekers. "Team Leader", "Assistant Manager" without any market sector information are the sort of listings that might simply get skipped over. Even worse, if suitable applicants are keyword searching for potential vacancies, there is a strong possibility that they will not be searching using these terms.

Clicking through to more detailed information, and another common problem can be found. Many recruiters provide a lot of company profile information but skimp on what they are looking for from the recruit. Most people want to know that they'll be working for a great company but will be much more interested in getting a detailed picture of their prospective roles and duties.

A good starting point would be to imagine the dream applicant and all the benefits they would bring to your organization. Write clear, tangible statements and deliverables around each of the benefits identifying the skills and experience that will make them achievable:

"We are seeking an experienced fundraising manager to identify and implement fundraising strategies for all aspects of the attached forward plan."

"Applicants will be expected to take ownership of the industry licensing requirements of the engineering team."

"Applicants will be expected to represent the company at industry events and should have excellent communication and public speaking skills."

With even a handful of descriptive statements, you will have a strong scope for the recruitment campaign and clearer picture of the potential recruitment value.

Once these statements are fully developed, recruiters will automatically have the shorthand for their skills wishlist, a focused agenda for interviewing and the foundations for assessing the successful applicant's performance. Crucially, jobseekers will have a crystal clear understanding of what the job will entail and plenty to get their teeth into when rewriting CVs and composing covering letters. The ideal scenario of dream job meeting the perfect applicant is much nearer and the scope for timewasting on all sides is greatly reduced.

If your recent recruitment experience has been one of wading through scores of disappointing applications, it might be worth checking that you're doing everything possible at your end to improve the suitability of the submissions you receive, and not just putting the blame on the jobseekers.

Email the author: Neil Ferguson